DDB Group is a well-respected communications agency, comprising brand, digital, PR and experiential solutions.
With a record for creative influence for their clients and making original ideas, when it came to the design of their interior fit-out, they wanted to work with a creative team with similar values.
The previous fit-out was out-dated with staff split over five floors, creating physical and visual separations between the group. Their office needed to be innovative and impressive, creating a sense of pride of place. It also needed to be a welcoming client and employee experience, outside of the usual corporate style, clearly demonstrating their values to clients.
The new office locates all 261 staff over two levels. A working production studio is incorporated as well as open plan office space for numerous sub-brands and groups, including Mango, Track and Interbrand. The project was delivered on time and to a constrained budget. Throughout the fit-out, a theatrical experience is created through the eclectic and rich collage of materials and textures.
A welcome kiosk greets you at the entrance lobby, no longer manned by a receptionist the concierge approach creates a relaxed mood without confrontation. The warmth and informality of exposed plywood staves on the reception and social hub joinery contrasts with the smartness of linear matt black aluminium joinery complete with critical details. The black Herringbone vinyl feature wall located behind the welcome kiosk creates an interesting counterpoint with the polished concrete flooring. A personalised rich green moss wall art-piece, creates a visual impression against the stark black wall, and is a subtle nod to the DDB logo. Tasteful technology is on display with the large edgeless LED wall, clearly visible as you enter the space from the lift lobby/concierge space.
A vibrant and collaborative social hub serves as a space for informal waiting. With bump space for teams and clients to meet in a relaxed hospitality setting with stunning views to Kauri Point and the upper Waitemata Harbour. Purposefully no clear brand colour or logos are evident in the fit-out, so as to reflect the office as home to the entire DDB Group of companies. The use of Scandinavian brands such as Muuto plus local designers keep it contemporary with a New Zealand creative undertone. Light, sheer curtains and glazing details create a loft-like residential feel, with silhouette effect, creating a softness which offsets the hard and somewhat brutal dominance of the building.
On the lower floor of the fit-out, the building structure is celebrated with exposed slab and services, plus slim suspended linear lights. Simplicity and the industrial nature of this floor contrasts with the warm hospitality vibe of the upper floor. The state of the art production suite is predominantly black and contrasts with the adjacent open plan which is warm and open with abundant natural light and timber work desks. Overall the resultant fit-out is an exemplar of unpretentious sophistication and casual grace that is inspiring to both employees and guest alike.
A warm vintage look throughout, the desire was to be timeless. Curvaceous pieces in soft tones, such as joinery, walls and furnishings are teamed with birch plywood evident in wall details, ceilings and joinery. Inspired by trends from Salone del Mobile 2018, soft and muted colours, sugary pastel pinks and mint greens are interplayed with bold olive green and petrol blue joinery. This paired beautifully with the use of Resene Zylone Sheen in Resene Quarter Milk White for a serene and sophisticated feel throughout the fit-out. This is deepened to Resene Milk White in the social hub. Contrasting the softness of the general wall colour, Resene Lustacryl semi-gloss waterborne enamel in Resene Baltic Sea was used for the doors throughout the project. This dark charcoal ties in with the matt black aluminium partitions and added a certain finesse and moodiness to the design.
The rawness of the existing building added another dimension to the palette and all the perimeter concrete slab walls and columns were left exposed. To prevent dust transfer Resene Aquapel water repellent was applied to the exposed concrete; it also accentuated the natural, mottled texture of the concrete and celebrated its imperfections. In the entrance lobby, to bring in the industrial concrete feel to the core of the building, Resene Sandtex in Resene Off Piste adds texture to achieve this effect. It was applied in a crow’s foot pattern that complements the feature black herringbone wall to which it is adjacent.
Resene Licorice and Resene Stromboli were used as feature colours in the meeting and quiet rooms. Their subtle colours lifted the refined palette of the natural fibre ceiling, simple light fittings and textured carpet. The upholstery of the soft furniture throughout the fit-out was chosen to tie in with the soft, deep green and elegant grey blue. The client requested an absolute black for the edit suites, so Resene Black was chosen to create a tailored detraction that serves as the perfect backdrop to the unembellished studio.
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